DA speaks about Susan Cox Powell case as investigation ends

Posted at 3:19 PM, May 21, 2013
and last updated 2013-05-21 19:31:42-04

WEST VALLEY CITY, Utah -- The Salt Lake County District Attorney’s Office was privy to details about the Susan Cox Powell investigation from the very beginning, and DA Sim Gill recently sat down to discuss the case as the active investigation comes to an end.

The West Valley City Police Department released more than 30,000 pages of documents relating to the disappearance of Susan Cox Powell Monday, and Gill said they illustrate the efforts law enforcement made to find Susan.

“If you look at the volume of stuff that's been generated, they chased every lead that was possible,” he said.

Gill began working closely with the case in 2011 when his administration took office. He said they worked hard, but the case was complicated enough that they couldn’t file charges.

“We struggled with a circumstantial case,” he said. “We didn’t have a body, a means of death,” he said. “Even if we could charge, what would we charge with--aggravated murder, murder, manslaughter, negligent homicide? So we were all working through the deficits that were there.”

The case was made more problematic when the primary person of interest, Josh Powell, intentionally set his home on fire, killing himself and his two sons, Charlie and Brayden.

Gill said the nature of the case has made it difficult for all involved.

"All the tragedies that are connected with this unfortunate set of circumstances is devastating for everyone in the process," he said. "You can't be human and not be affected and impacted by that."